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Home :: Archive :: 2004 :: January ::
Shakespeare Blacks and Jews
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.0179  Friday, 23 January 2004

[1]     From:   Joachim Martillo <
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        Date:   Thursday, 22 Jan 2004 07:56:46 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.0164 Shakespeare Blacks and Jews

[2]     From:   Sean Lawrence <
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        Date:   Thursday, 22 Jan 2004 09:30:13 -0800
        Subj:   RE: SHK 15.0164 Shakespeare Blacks and Jews


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Joachim Martillo <
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Date:           Thursday, 22 Jan 2004 07:56:46 EST
Subject: 15.0164 Shakespeare Blacks and Jews
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.0164 Shakespeare Blacks and Jews

Moro in contemporary Spanish and Moor in Elizabethan English mean Arab
or Berber and would not normally refer to a Black African.

I must also wonder whether Elizabeth I might have been trying to expel
Gypsies, who were often confused with Arabs or Moors.

Joachim Martillo

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <
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Date:           Thursday, 22 Jan 2004 09:30:13 -0800
Subject: 15.0164 Shakespeare Blacks and Jews
Comment:        RE: SHK 15.0164 Shakespeare Blacks and Jews

Thanks for everyone who wrote it about Othello and race in Elizabethan
England, a subject far more complex than most people give it credit for
being.

I would like to add, however, that Elizabethans didn't seem to
understand that the solution to economic hardship is growth.  Armed only
with a fairly primitive, neo-feudal, economic theory, they could be
partly forgiven for thinking that throwing people out would reduce
internal scarcity.  Unlike current xenophobes, they might have believed
in good faith that they were helping people.  Shakespeare's own
opposition to popular xenophobia seems to be contained in the Thomas
More fragment, as John Dover Wilson argued some time ago.

Yours sincerely,
Sean Lawrence.

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